To request a Multi-Partial Team please click here to fill out the request form. Requests should be submitted two weeks prior to an event. The ability to staff event requests received less than two weeks prior to an event cannot be guaranteed.
What is the Multi-Partial Team?
The Multi-Partial Team (MPT) collaborates with students, staff, faculty, and community members both before and during events to understand everyone’s rights and responsibilities related to Brown policies including the Protest and Demonstration Guidelines.
Multipartiality, in contrast to neutrality, refers to understanding the perspectives and lived experiences we bring with us. It acknowledges the presence of 'dominant narratives' (or sets of assumptions) based on socialization. It encourages meaningful engagement that prompts reflection as opposed to direct confrontation. In this case it also means that team members are there to be on everyone's side. They are there to support hosts, attendees, protesters, etc.
The MPT supports everyone, serving in an advisory role (along with other University administrators) with event organizers on best practices for managing a successful event, especially controversial ones as well as a supportive resource for those who want to engage in advocacy and activism including protest. The MPT consists of staff, faculty, and students from across the university and is on a volunteer basis. The MPT is only present at an event if requested by an event sponsor or others (typically students) who want to engage in activism including protest.
The Multi-Partial Team is:
- a thought partner for event sponsors who want to think through (in advance or in the moment) the logistics necessary to ensure successful events;
- a thought partner for those who may want to have their voices heard in opposition or even protest. The MPT doesn’t prevent or even manage dissent or potential protest. Rather teams work with students to help them understand policy and their choices;
- available to attend events and serve as a collaborative thought partner to everyone (event sponsors, audience members, and potential protestors at events.
The Multi-Partial Team is not:
- a decision making group. MPT’s will not make decisions for event sponsors about management of their events either in advance or in the moment;
- asked to play any role related to the decision making role and authority of DPS;
- asked to provide support beyond of its specific mission - team members do not provide logistical support or event management staffing.
What exactly does the Multi-Partial Team Do?
Prior to an event, the MPT coordinator will assign members to meet with event sponsors to be a thought partner around planning including: establishing goals, hoped for outcomes, and format and logistics; brainstorming proactive and reactive ways to address both opportunities and challenges; helping event sponsors think through ways they can proactively and reactively address potential push back and controversy; meeting with groups that may have an issue with an event to think through policy and choices related to having their voices heard including potential protest; and collaborate with the other administrators who may be supporting event sponsors like University Events, University Communications, etc.
During an event, the MPT will meet on site as much as one hour prior to the start of the event and will remain there as a thought partner to everyone in attendance as needed.